HUMN 1101: Research Paper and Prospectus Instructions
Your paper begins with the selection of a topic and basic research.
Topic: Choose a topic that relates to the study of humanities, that interests you, and that can be connected to present day life and the content found in your textbook. Your thesis should reflect all of these objectives. A word of caution: biographies of famous people are not acceptable as a topic. If you want to write about a person, you must do so in the context of his/her contributions to the humanities and your interest in that person.
The greatest danger with your topic selection is that it will be too broad. Please narrow your topic so that it can be covered in a short paper, five-seven double-spaced pages. For instance, the Roman Empire is not a narrow topic. However, the Roman penchant for blood sports would work quite nicely and could certainly be related to the modern day concept of recreation (televised team sports, wrestling, boxing, or video games with violent confrontations, etc.).
Here is another example of narrowing your topic. Perhaps you have a great interest in children. Relate that interest specifically to the humanities. You could focus your paper on how one particular artist depicts children or compare two artists in different time periods and their paintings of children. Then relate that artwork to current trends such as portrait photography of children. You could look at literature, music, movies, or television shows for or about children. Any age group would work.
Also you could take one of the themes in Part III of your book: Religion, Morality, Happiness, Love, Life-Affirmation, Nature, Freedom and trace one specific aspect of it through one of the arts â€“ visual art, three-dimensional art, literature, music, theater, film, or television.
The main thing to remember is to connect your topic to the study of humanities. Google topics for humanitiesâ€™ papers to gain some more ideas.